10 Best Homesteading Gifts
With Directions for Making a Crocheted Cast Iron Skillet Handle Cover
This is the time of year that many friends are graduating from college, getting their own homes, getting married, or starting a new life on a hobby farm in the country. Its a beautiful time of growing and new beginnings. In some cases you will want to gift the person with something beautiful and useful to encourage their new independence and living style. Many of our grown children’s friends are not interested in the old classic wedding gifts such as china and crystal. They want things they can use everyday, and quality matters. I started giving some thought to what would be a good gift and came up with a list of homesteading gifts.
1. Cast iron cookware. Lodge is my favorite brand. This is the quintessential homestead cookware. I couldn’t be without my 12 inch skillet. Over the years I have seasoned this fry pan and it sits on the stove because I use it nearly every day. Want to spice up the gift of a fry pan? Add a handmade cover for the handle (directions at the end of the post) a cookbook, and a couple fun dish towels. This is the perfect gift for newly weds, new homesteaders and grads moving into their own place.
2. Knives Quality knives should last a lifetime.
3. If a set of kitchen knives is too pricey for your gift giving budget, consider a good quality pair of gardening scissors, pruners, or clippers. If the recipient loves to garden and grow food, they will appreciate have a quality pair of pruners or scissors.
4. Metal or wooden garden cart. We have been through our share of cheap plastic wheelbarrows over the years. But one thing that has been with us for years is a hand me down metal garden cart from my in-laws when they moved to a retirement home.
5. Wool blankets. Acrylic washes up easily of course and may be the better choice along with cotton for children who may get sick in bed. But nothing beats the warmth factor and breath-ability of wool. If you are so inclined, a handmade afghan will be treasured for years.
6. Kitchen Scale This has so many uses in addition to weighing food portions. Use it for making soap, cheese, bread baking, and crafts.
7. Hot water bath canner. If they never choose to home can their own fruits and pickles, the large canner can still be used as a stock pot or a crab steamer.
8. Pressure Canner/cooker versatile piece of equipment that will pressure can a few jars of home cooked food or just one meal.
9. Dehydrator – not just for dehydrating food for storage but it also makes fruit leather, jerky, and dries herbs for use in teas.
10. Cookbooks! Here are a few of my favorite recommendations for people learning how to cook or learning how to prepare and cook for a family.
Homestead Cooking with Carol by Carol J. Alexander
From Scratch by Shaye Elliott
Organic Canning by Daisy Luther – yes it says it’s a canning book but the recipes are tasty and use basic ingredients. Great when canning for the winter or cooking for a crowd.
All of these cookbooks encourage the use of whole foods, healthy ingredients and easy prepping to make the meal easy to complete.
And now for the directions for making the
Crocheted Cast Iron Skillet Handle Cover
1. Measure the length of the skillet’s handle
2. Chain 12 and join with a slip stitch to make a circle
3. Continue to crochet in the round making a tube
4. When the tube is long enough, finish the tube end by crocheting it closed. I use this method – at the beginning of the round, crochet two and skip one stitch, crochet two and skip one. Continue doing this until the hole is closed and you have one loop left. Pull a last slip stitch through the loop and pull to tighten.
5. Leaving a one inch tail, clip the yarn. Using the crochet hook bring the yarn tail to the inside.
6. Finish the open end by weaving the beginning tail into the stitches.
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